Breathing in Delhi is like smoking 30 cigarettes a day

New-Delhi: The national capital on Monday witnessed air quality dipping to the ‘very poor’ category as Air Quality Index (AQI) reached 326.

The National Capital Region (NCR) continued to witness bad air as Noida, which is part of the national capital region, recorded an AQI of 356, in the ‘very poor’ category, while Gurugram’s AQI stood at 364 and continued to remain in the ‘very poor category, as per data released by SAFAR (System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research) India.

On Saturday morning, Delhi’s Air Quality Index (AQI) was recorded at 431 , according to data from the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting And Research (SAFAR).

The AQI on Friday night deteriorated to 437 from Thursday’s 418, said SAFAR.

An AQI between zero and 50 is considered “good”; 51 and 100 “satisfactory”, 101 and 200 “moderate”, 201 and 300 “poor”,  301 and 400 “very poor” and 401 and 500 “severe”.

Meanwhile, the air quality in Delhi’s adjoining cities of Noida and Gurugram was recorded at 529 and 478, both under the “severe” category.

In the wake of the continued air pollution, Delhi announced the closure of primary schools across the city from Saturday onwards and also banned the entry of trucks, other than the ones carrying essentials, into the national capital.

Emission from stubble burning in adjoining areas of National Capital Region has exponentially increased the pollution level. The situation is expected to be worsen in coming weeks.

Primary schools in Delhi would be closed from Saturday as air quality worsens, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said during a presser. For secondary school students, outdoor activities would be restricted. This comes a day after schools in the neighbouring city of Noida were told to hold online classes till November 8.

According to a World Health Organisation ( WHO )survey of 1,650 world cities, and a survey of 7,000 world cities by the US-based Health Effects Institute in August 2022, Delhi is the worst of any major city in the world. In Delhi, poor quality air irreversibly damages the lungs of 2.2 million or 50% of all children. In many areas in NCR, the AQI has worsened to 500 which are hazardous as per WHO and all standards, reported Tatva

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